Day 1 of the two-day DMK general council meeting here, the first since the party’s drubbing in the assembly elections, did not yield any answers, but raised the most obvious question: Why should the DMK continue its alliance with the Congress?
In the four-hour-long session, speaker after speaker held the alliance partner responsible for the party’s defeat.
"What is the use of supporting the Congress when it is not doing anything to help the DMK? The CBI is under direct control of the prime minister but it has proved to be of no comfort,” said former agriculture minister and a close associate of party chief M Karunanidhi, Veerapandi Arumuguam.
Arumuguam has to appear before the crime branch of the CID for questioning in a land grab case on Monday. He also said having a union minister of state for finance from the DMK (SS Palanimanickam) had been of no use, given the lack of progress in the income tax cases against chief minister J Jayalalithaa of the AIADMK.
The meeting was at an abandoned spinning mill in the industrial estate of Singanallur, 7 km from Coimbatore railway station. Roads leading to the venue were dotted with posters and cutouts of Karunanidhi and younger son MK Stalin.
Missing was elder son and union minister MK Alagiri, who was, however, present at the meet, speculations notwithstanding. The mood among the cadres was in keeping with the scenery. The general expectation was that former deputy chief minister Stalin would be elevated.
Senior DMK leader TS Baalu, however, dismissed rivalry between Stalin and Alagiri as media “gossip”. He said the party was united.
Nipping allegations that his family was responsible for the electoral defeat, Karunanidhi said: “All of us have to share the blame of defeat equally.”
He told partymen not to see the DMK’s performance as "real defeat".
Sources confirmed that the issue of sending replacements for former textile minister Dayanidhi Maran and former telecom minister A Raja would be discussed on Sunday.